May 10, 2011

The Rose Princess and the Special Gift by Mike de Vetter and Travis Orams

The Rose Princess and the Special Gift is the story of a special girl in an idyllic kingdom who learns about sharing and generosity.

The Rose Princess wakes up one morning to find that her father, the king, has left her a box of gifts. As she continues throughout her day (walking around with no parental supervision or security staff!), the Rose Princess encounters others who seem more in need of these gifts than herself, so she parcels them out. She returns home worried that her father will be upset with her, and is amazed to discover that he is actually proud of her for acts of kindness.

The story itself is simple, and not -like many children's books these days- filled with jokes and innuendo for the parents' benefit. In its simplicity however there are layers of depth that lead to question and answer sessions and many re-reads. There are, in fact, many lessons here beyond the obvious. I couldn't help but wonder if it was at all inspired by the parable of the talents.

My kids really liked this book, especially my five year old daughter. Beyond the story, she loves the illustrations of the wide-eyed princess, who embodies every little girl's idea of what a princess ought to be. It is also a good length for a kids' book, long enough to satiate the children's desire for a good story, but not so long that the parent starts to fantasize about margaritas or mentally compose shopping lists halfway through.

I received a copy of this book for the purpose of review.

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